Facebook has taken a broad definition of political speech and included issue ads in its political ad transparency initiative. ⁿ/ₐ Twitter announced it would stop placing political ads as of November 15, 2019. Google/YouTube has limited its ad transparency initiative to ads placed by candidates for federal office or ads that mention a candidate for federal office. Political issue ads have not been included in its ad transparency initiative. 11. Fully disclose state-backed information operation content When state-sponsored information operations are detected, it’s crucial for platforms to be transparent about how their platforms were weaponized. Fully releasing datasets allows the public and research community to understand the complete nature of the operation, its goals, methods, and size. Full transparency also allows independent researchers to further expound on platform findings, sometimes uncovering media assets not initially detected. Twitter has disclosed full datasets of state-backed information operations. Facebook provides sample content from state-backed information operations via third party analysis. Google/YouTube provides only sample content from state-backed information operations. 12. Label state-controlled media content State-controlled media combines the opinion-making power of news with the strategic backing of government. Separate from publicly funded, editorially independent outlets, state-controlled media tends to present news material in ways that are biased in favor of the controlling government (i.e. propaganda).
Facebook announced it would be introducing labels for content published by state-controlled media starting in 2020. YouTube has introduced labeling on all state-controlled media on its platform. Twitter has not introduced labeling of content from state-controlled media. 13. End ad partnerships with state-controlled media. As outlined in policy #2, state-controlled media combines the opinion-making power of news with the strategic backing of government. Separate from publicly funded, editorially independent outlets, state-controlled media tends to present news material in ways that are biased towards the goal of the controlling government (i.e. propaganda). Allowing these outlets to directly place content in front of Americans via advertising and/or profit from content published on platforms enhances come of these outlets’ ability to propagandize and misinform the public. Twitter has banned advertising from state-controlled media. YouTube allows state-controlled media to advertise and partners with state-controlled media in its advertising programs, providing those outlets with a significant revenue stream. Facebook allows state-controlled media to advertise and partners with state-controlled media via its instant-articles program, providing those outlets with a revenue stream. ¹News Use Across Social Media Platforms 2018, Pew Research Center , September 2018
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- Spring '19
- Hassan Kasfy